Thursday, July 31, 2008

Playing In The Street?

I'm trying to figure out why I think it's wrong what a couple neighborhood kids were doing yesterday.

It wasn't the first time I've seen the folks at the druggie house a few houses up on the other side of the street playing with a frisbee. A few weeks ago they were tossing it back and forth across E street. There were even a couple adults playing along, too, but they weren't in the street. They were standing on the sidewalk on both sides of the street.

And so it was yesterday, but it was just two kids. I'm bad at aging kids but I'd guess the one on my side of the street was around eight or nine, the one on the other side of the street maybe a year or two younger. They stood on the sidewalk on both sides of the street passing a frisbee back and forth.

Problem is, E street is one of Eureka's busy streets. Still, they waited for a lull in the traffic before throwing. I felt uneasy about it and wondered why they didn't just walk the five blocks to Carson Park where they'd have all the room they needed to play. Either that, or walk one house down to Trinity Street which is much less busy.

I'll have to admit wondering about Trinity Street, as well, as I've seen them tossing football on Trinity now and again and I found that a bit odd. Why not Carson Park?

Funny I felt that way because I remember as a kid in Tustin, CA playing real football on the street in front of my house. We'd play until it was too dark to play anymore. Not much traffic on Charloma Drive back then and we'd only have to stop playing to let cars pass by on occasion. No one complained, as I recall.

So why did I find these two kids throwing a frisbee across a busy street troubling?

I guess I wasn't the only one. After about twenty minutes a Eureka Police motorcycle cop drove up and pulled right up next to the kid on my side of the street. Somebody else must have been bothered and called the cops.

The cop pulls up and I could hear him say, "Give me the friz.". The kid hands him the frisbee and the cop talks to him for longer than I would have expected. Then the kid walks back across the street to the druggie house. The cop parks his bike and walks over to the house, as well.

After talking to the adults at the house, once again for longer than I would have expected, the cop hops on his motorcycle and leaves. No more frisbees in the street.

Someone help me out and articulate exactly why kids shouldn't be throwing frisbees back and forth across a busy street, even if they do it between traffic? Is it dangerous, or just plain rude? I do see how it could be a distraction to drivers. I wonder how the cop explained it?


At 1:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fred, I hope that comment came out OK. My computer or your Blog whisked my message away just as I was leaving the message.

I can't tell if it was sent, or if it just disappeared.

At 2:32 PM, Blogger Fred said...

Your comment above was the first I've received. Either I missed it or blogspot ate it. Try it again.

At 10:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

OK, Fred. Here goes:

If a driver on one of our warm Eureka afternoons should happen to drive by the E-Street frisbee throwers with his or her driver's side window rolled down, do you think a frisbee might hit the driver?

Something like that happened recently. It was in the news, but I can't remember where it happened. Some driver got hit in the head with some object thrown from a sidewalk. The driver freaked, the car hit something, and somebody was seriously hurt.

I'm not saying it happens all the time, but it does happen.

If something like that happened in Eureka, it would most likely be an accident. Still, some kids aren't sweet and nice. Some kids actually try to cause trouble. I know it's hard to believe, Fred, but it's true.

I mean, those kids might have been trying to freak out the drivers by throwing frisbees at their cars.

Why don't those kids play on one of the many quiet side-streets off E Street? It would be much safer there. Safer for them. Maybe safer for the cars, too.

I wonder if the police department had earlier contact with the kids?

Either way, the officer seems to have solved any problem by talking calmly with the people involved.

Just some thoughts from one who knows E Street well.

At 7:14 AM, Blogger Fred said...

From what I could see, although I didn't watch them the whole time, they were waiting for a lull in the traffic before they'd toss the frisbee back and forth. Still, as you say, why they didn't either walk two houses down to Trinity Street or even just toss it back and forth on the same side of the street is beyond me.

As far as earlier contact with the police, the cops have been to their house at least a few times that I've noticed, but that was usually for adult related stuff, not the kids.

At 5:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe they are playing on E Street right in front of their parents house so the parents can keep a close eye on them.

At 3:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

First thing most people would do, when an object is coming at them while driving- is freak.
THEN they panic.

Then the average Eureka driver would:
Slam on the GAS, while swerving, to hurry past whatever it is. Cause after all, most drivers here appear to be VERY LATE for where ever it is theyre going. Thats why so many hate and ignore those pesky stop signs and red lights.

They would then slam into the kids, parked cars, and a house or two, before speeding away.

But thats just been MY observation...


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